I spent the past three days at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration with my family in Orlando, FL. It's a highly acclaimed conference that only a few hundred people get into every year. When I found out that I made it in, Tim & I decided to work it right into our Give Every Day route.
We parked our 5th wheel at a campground and then drove our truck to the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa (our stay was included in the very modest conference fee).
Highlight #1: Meeting the spunky, smart, and super sweet Colleen. Our families spent several days exploring the parks together and our kids were instant best friends.
Highlight #2: Reconnecting with the generous + gracious Caryn, the vulnerable + entrepreneurial Janice, the stunning + down-to-earth Christine, the unpretentious + professional Michele, and the humble + powerful Jennifer. (You should definitely check out their blogs). I also enjoyed briefly meeting Audrey, Cathi, Amanda, Maria, Amy, and many others.
Highlight #3: Experiencing the magic of the parks with my best friend and the two most beautiful blondies you've ever seen.
Thanks to Leanne, Laura, and the whole Disney team for producing a classy event.
Thanks also to Darcie for being my go-to girl for Disney-related advice.
Do you have any questions about Disney World or the DSMM conference? I'm happy to answer.
Looks like you had a lot of fun!
I've heard so many great things about the Disney Social Media Conference. I am so glad to hear that you and your family enjoyed yourself and had a great time. And connecting with other Bloggy friends... icing on the cake!
In passing, I heard someone mention your name/blog in passing and say that you were there. I though, "Yay! We're finally in the same place at the same time. Of course, we will bump into each other." I'm so bummed that we didn't. I'm glad that you had a great time though. My family did too. (The next time that we're in the same vicinity, I'll be sure to track you down!)
Yes, let's make it a point to meet. I would like that.
SO fabulous seeing you again Stephanie -- and meeting your beautiful family! I wish we could have had a whole week to vacation together!
Great wrap up -- and wow, such nice compliments. :)
So do I! Conferences always whiz right by, don't they? There's never enough time to just sit + chat at a leisurely pace.
It was SO great connecting with you and your family on the last night! I'm not sure if you guys are still in town, but if you are we would love to get together or something! I have become obsessed with your blogs and just love what you guys are doing with Give Everyday!
We're only in Kissimmee until Wednesday...and then we're heading north. Otherwise, we would have loved to get together with you! I'm so glad that our families shared a table on that final night.
P.S. Is it normal for the rain to persist all day + night like this? (I'm in Arizona girl and totally not used to this). ;)
That looks fantastic! Sure wish I could have got to meet you while my family was in Disney the same weekend. Safe travels...
Same here! Those conference weekends always fly right by and always leave me wishing that I had more opportunities to just sit + chat w/ my favorite bloggers.
It was wonderful to meet you and your darling family Stephanie. Thank you so much for the mention. I am truly honored! You are an inspirations to all you come in contact with. What lovely lifetime memories you're making on your sojourn of service!! I'm looking forward to your arrival in Southern California. ;D
You're too adorable for words!
Looks like so much fun!!!
Looks like an amazing time.
Was the hotel modeled after the Del Coronado? Looks just like it!
You look gorgeous by the way. The road seems to suit you. Hug.
I forgot to ask, but it does look like the spitting image of the Del, doesn't it?
SO great to see you and hang/chat for a bit! You constantly inspire me to think about others...to look outside the box that is my life...I am in such awe of what you and Tim and the girls are doing....I know that you are going to have an amazingly blessed year and that you will bless so many along your way. I hope you make it to California....Let me know? I can always try to recommend places to ya! : )
I wonder if you had to spend a lot of time away from Tim and the girls - did you have to go to conference sessions, etc.
Also, was the park more crowded than usual because of the conference?
The conference consisted of 1 full day (8:30-4:30) away from my family for sessions. Other than that, there were 3 family dinners...and a few optional activities.
The conference was limited to a few hundred moms so the park probably barely noticed a difference. ;)
Sounds like y'all had a ball!
How do you go about registering and what's the application process like?
It goes something like this:
(1) Registration opens on a particular day + time.
(2) Everyone rushes to the website to try to get their application in.
(3) If you succeed in getting the page to load, you fill out basic information and stats about yourself & your blog.
(4) Registration closes within an hour.
(5) Disney reviews applications and selects attendees w/ a "secret rubric."
(6) All registrants receive confirmation e-mails if they were accepted or not.
Totally sounds awesome - I was so interested in going to this one, but didn't apply b/c we just didn't have the funding and I would've had to go alone and I just am not ready to part with my baby yet! :) But maybe next year!! :)
I think staying with your baby was a very wise choice. Conferences are fun, but there will ALWAYS be conferences. Babies, however, are only babies for a little while.
What fun! So glad you had the chance to experience it!
It looks amazing! All of it!! Hmmm...might have to think about it for next year!
Most of the sessions weren't particularly outstanding, but we did receive A LOT for the minimal conference fee. As is always the case with conferences, the best thing was meeting and reconnecting with fellow bloggers. The family dinners were also super fun - with great entertainment and a buffet just for kids! :)
How did you like the Grand Floridian? I know it's the premiere resort at Disney World, but I have heard reviews that it's a little "stuffy" or "snooty" so we haven't wanted to bring our 2 year old there.
What were your, Tim's, and the girls' favorite rides?
As I've mentioned, my husband, son, and I are huge Disney fans and we love talking about Disney trips with everyone!
I LOVED the Grand Floridian and so did my family! We didn't find it stuffy at all. Obviously the vibe and decor is not as "young" as say the All Star resorts, but it is beyond gorgeous and luxurious. I only wish I could live there! LOL
The Grand Floridian WAS beautiful - but in a grandmotherly Victorian kind of way. Lots of white walls, rose-colored decor, fancy pictures and pianos, etc.
I think I would prefer to stay at Fort Wilderness. The mountain/cabin theme is much more my style!
Or, better yet, I think it would be fun to rent a house or to stay at a campground in the area with a group of families. That would probably be the best option of all.
I'll share our favorite rides soon. :)
Seems like you had so much. Florida is beautiful and I love Disney very much too :)
Wow, I bet you had the best time. I forget where you'll be in August- any plans for BlogHer?
I don't think so. We'll probably be up in Washington State in August. I hope you have a wonderful time though!
Thank you for including me in your post. It was so wonderful meeting you in person! I hate that I didn't get a chance to see you on the Saturday!!
Same here! I am confident that we will meet again soon. :)
Sounds like a lot of fun.